Taco Soup

This Taco Soup is one of my family’s FAVORITE meals! I love this recipe because it’s super easy–make it on the stovetop or toss everything into your crockpot and let it simmer all day. Plus, it uses up a whole bunch of refrigerator and pantry staples: canned tomatoes, tomato sauce, corn, taco seasoning (you can even make your own in bulk!), and kidney beans. Oh, and a fresh onion and some fresh garlic. It’s cheap, packed with protein, and feeds a smally army. In fact, my oldest son, who has always been a die-hard chili fan (this Easy Weeknight Chili and Sara’s Black Bean and Sweet Potato Chili are two of his favorite meals) declared this his favorite. So. That’s saying a lot.

My favorite topping is a big spoonful or two of Pico de Gallo. It adds a lot of fresh flavor with almost no extra calories. I also love adding some sour cream, shredded cheese, and some crushed tortilla chips (or, if you’re feeling fancy, you could fry your own tortilla strips.

bowl of taco soup from our best bites

 
taco soup from our best bites

Taco Soup

This family-friendly taco soup is packed with protein and fiber, uses a whole bunch of pantry staples, and feeds a small army!

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. lean or extra-lean ground beef
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 4-5 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 1.25- ounce packet taco seasoning or make your own and use about 1/4 cup
  • 3 cups water divided
  • 2 28- ounce cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 15- ounce can tomato sauce
  • 2 15- ounce cans kidney beans rinsed and drained
  • 1 can corn drained (or 1 cup frozen corn)
  • Toppings: Pico de Gallo light sour cream, shredded cheese, crushed tortilla chips, tortilla strips, guacamole, etc.

Instructions

  • Heat 1-2 teaspoons olive oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. When hot, brown the ground beef with the onion and garlic. When almost brown, add the taco seasoning and 1 cup water. Add the remaining ingredients, including the remaining 2 cups water, bring to a medium boil, then, cover and reduce heat. Simmer for at least 15 minutes. Serve with desired toppings. Makes 10 1 1/2-cup servings.

Notes

Slow Cooker Instructions: After browning the meat, place all the ingredients into a slow cooker and cook on low for about 6-8 hours.
Freezer Instructions: Because of all the canned goods, you'll just take up a lot of space in your freezer if you freeze the whole recipe. However, after it's been cooked, the leftovers freeze extremely well. You can even try freezing individual portions in 12-oz. freezer-safe containers and then reheating them for a quick lunch.
Nutritional Information (using 93% lean ground beef):
Calories: 188
Fat: 3.6
Fiber: 8.6
Protein: 15.8
Author: kate jones
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Meet The Author

Sara Wells

Sara Wells co-founded Our Best Bites in 2008. She is the author of three Bestselling Cook Books, Best Bites: 150 Family Favorite RecipesSavoring the Seasons with Our Best Bites, and 400 Calories or Less from Our Best Bites. Sara’s work has been featured in many local and national news outlets and publications such as Parenting MagazineBetter Homes & GardensFine CookingThe Rachel Ray Show and the New York Times.

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Questions & Reviews

  1. This a great soup. I make mine with chicken instead of beef. I was just looking through your site and discovered your taco chicken recipe and was thinking I try that in it. Plus I had black beans and its all yummy. So glad I found your site!

  2. thanks for the update on the serving size, this recipe looks yummers! Can't wait to try it. Thanks for listing the nutritional content. I am counting calories. Much appreciated!!!!!

  3. Kate, I input 500 g of lean (not extra lean) ground beef. I had to fudge some of the measurements because of the way the recipe builder on that site works, and I'm not sure my total number of servings is accurate. I don't measure my food, so I only guessed that there were 12 servings to a pot – there may be more, which would make the number of calories per serving less. Either way, it's a pretty low-cal soup!

  4. i love this recipe! when i make it i used ground turkey! its so tender in this soup!

  5. Kiersten–Hmmm…that's a big difference! What % of ground beef did you calculate it with? And how did you measure the beans?

  6. I input this recipe into my DailyBurn account (www.dailyburn.com) and this is the nutritional info it gave me: (I estimated 12 servings in a pot, but there might be more). I didn't specify low sodium tomatoes or anything.

    Nutrition Facts
    Serving Size 1.5 c
    Number of Servings 12

    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 249
    Calories from Fat 0
    % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 7.5 g 12 %
    Saturated Fat 2.6 g 13 %
    Trans Fat 0 g
    Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
    Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
    Cholesterol 25 mg 8 %
    Sodium 990 mg 41 %
    Potassium 420 mg 12 %
    Total Carbs 32 g 11 %
    Dietary Fiber 7 g 28 %
    Sugars 9 g
    Other Carbs 0 g
    Protein 18.7 g 37 %
    Vitamin A 1 %
    Vitamin C 27 %
    Calcium 8 %
    Iron 24 %
    Vitamin D 0 %
    Vitamin E 6 %
    Vitamin K 14 %
    Thiamin 6 %
    Riboflavin 4 %
    Niacin 7 %
    Vitamin B6 5 %
    Folic Acid 0 %
    Vitamin B12 0 %
    Biotin 0 %
    Pantothenic Acid 2 %
    Phosphorus 4 %
    Iodine 0 %
    Magnesium 6 %
    Zinc 2 %
    Selenium 1 %
    Copper 11 %
    Manganese 5 %
    Chromium 0 %
    Molybdenum 0 %
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

  7. This is a keeper! But wow, you really do need the BIG soup pot – I had to switch pots partway through to handle everything! Thanks again guys.

  8. sad to say that I was the only one who liked this 🙁

    oh well – that just means LOTS of healthy, yummy lunches/dinners for ME!

  9. Thank you, thank you!! I LOVE taco soup and sadly my husband doesn't. Now I'm totally excited to make it and freeze it in individual servings so I can eat it for my lunch. I don't know why I never thought of that before. My kids will be jealous – they love it, too.

  10. wow – thats a LOT of soup!

    (it's on the stove now and smells YUMMY!)

    I can't wait to taste it!!! 🙂

  11. I have been making something similar for a couple of years. Its a fav and we could eat it all the time! I also add a ranch seasoning packet to mine but otherwise the ingredients are the same. I often make a double batch!

  12. We made this last night and it was devoured by our 3-1/2 year old. Even the big chuncks of onion and tomato were gone when he was done. THANKS! We love anything that gets a veggie in that kid 🙂

  13. Emily- congrats on your weight loss! And yes, that other tortilla soup is really low cal, so eat up!

  14. LOVE the healthy food! Keep 'em coming! WW is the best! I lost 92 lbs last year following their plan, but on my own. Good luck! Thanks for this de-lish recipe. Is the taco soup with the taco chicken (in your archives) also a healthy choice too? I love that recipe of yours and make it all the time… so I'm hoping it's good for me.

  15. This looks really good. I have a pound of ground beef in the fridge that I was going to use for making hamburger helper, but this looks way better and not that many more steps. 😉 I don't have any pre-packaged taco seasoning, but I think I'll try using Alton Brown's Taco Mix #9 (or whatever it's called, from his fairly recently taco episode.)

  16. I made this tonight for dinner & it was delicious! I didn't have the kidney beans so I just substituted with what I did have on hand. Also, I like the flavor of cumin so I added at least a Tablespoon.

    Yummy!

  17. Yum….This is very close to my family's taco soup recipe. I change up the beans according to what I have on hand. I LOVE black beans in it! I've done black and pinto, black and kidney, etc…it's all good!! Another twist that was super yummy is Chicken taco soup! I just used chicken broth instead of water and shredded chicken (like one of your yummy mexican chicken recipes). Delicious!!!

  18. I love your blog…taco soup is one of my favorites…have you tried adding an envelope of Hidden Valley dressing mix?

  19. I stumbled upon your blog and I love it! I am making "taco soup" for dinner tonight! I am a new blogger so I just wanted to let you know that I have added you to my favorite blogs and I also featured your "Taco Soup" on my Blog under What's for Dinner.
    You can find it here: http://simplycadence.blogspot.com/

  20. I do weight watchers and love that you are doing points with these. It is so hard to find trusted WW recipes that don't break the bank. I know anything I get here will be delicious and satisfying! Thanks for the recipes! Oh, is this points per cup?

  21. Oh my goodness my mouth water within seconds! everything looks delicious! I am officially your newest follower!

  22. I made this last night and it was fantastic! I only had whole canned tomatoes on hand so I just diced them up and it was great. Oh, and I used homemade pinto beans that I had cooked up last week; I'm not the hugest fan of kidney beans, but I love pinto beans when they're cooked up like my boyfriend's mom taught me. 🙂 This did make a ton and it's my lunch for work today! 🙂

  23. I'm salivating! Now I know what I'm going to make for dinner on Saturday. I have these ingrediants in my pantry ALL the time. Thanks for this! ~Lori